's 2007 ("The Aftermath
Odyssey") has the feel of a well-intentioned, progressive metal project.
Perhaps if this was a first draft, it would have easily been called likeable ; however, since this is the final product, a lot of what we have presented here remains to be desired.
Perhaps the most wanting wish for "The Aftermath
Odyssey" would be to hear a much better connection between the lyrical concept and its music.
" is a good example of what the whole could have been : there's a battle horn intro that sounds off the following heavy guitar riff, as well as a most somber piano interlude that gives off a funeral-like feel one would find complimentary to the story's hopeless finale.
"Soulmates" accomplishes the same thing by not only writing the song in classic ballad style, but also features Sara
Heurlin as the female voice to render the duet authentic.
The rest of the album, though, doens't match up well at all. Worse, the music just isn't great, not that the abilities of the band are bad.
City" showcases an admirable example of Jonas
Karlgren's synth work, but the spoken words near the end of the song (a slight reworking of the American Pledge of Allegiance
) is unnecessary and thus kills the mood. Joakim Hedestedt provides a wonderful bass sound on "The Council" as well as on "The Last Deciever".
Basically speaking from a genre standpoint, this is a rock opera, but as much as there are plenty of the operatic parts (including a well done introduction song called "The End
" : it's a collage of CNN-like sound clips of mayhem and doom culminating in the Big Blast
and the end). The rock/metal parts are either not there or simply unmoving.
"In The Ashes
", the third track, is the first one to churn out an up tempo metal riff.
"The Council" has a metallic machine gun that blasts away after a choral interlude near the end of the piece, but that's six songs in.
It should be noted that "Confessions", from a music to lyrics point of view, is probably the most valuable song on the album due to its much needed rising action feel to buttress a storyline that's fast coming apart. In fact, the story itself is probably the weakest part of "The Aftermath
Odyssey". The lead vocals are weak, too, for Neils Lindstrom's voice is not only thin, but there is a faux soul approach to the slower parts that doesn't pay off well at all.
, back to the concept.
Basic and straightforward, it's about a man who survives nuclear fallout, finds hope and a future in a woman, who then turns out to be a traitor to the surviving community. The conflict rises between this city and the Others
to a level of war and the result of said war leaves our man hopeless and futureless in the end. The last song, "Point Zero
" is thus a very gloom and doom ending with no moral or point to this blackened ash odyssey in sight.
The concluding point here as well as for the whole album is had there been one from conception through to the finished work, Nation Beyond
's "The Aftermath
Odyssey" might have ended up being a much greater accomplishment.